A handy guide to travel options between the UK and Brittany for summer 2024.
Here we include information about ferries and driving times, direct flights and car hire, plus train travel to Brittany. Click on ‘Read more’ for all details.
Brittany enjoys a couple of ferry routes direct from the south coast of England, as well as much improved roads across the north of France if you have taken a short sea crossing from Dover or a longer crossing to Normandy.
The AA Route Planner indicates the following approximate driving times from the ferry ports to most of our properties in Brittany:
Dunkirk 6¾ – 7¾ hours
Calais 6½ – 7½ hours
Le Havre 4¼ – 5¼ hours
Caen 3¼ – 4¼ hours
Cherbourg 3¾ – 4¾ hours
St Malo 2¼ – 3¼ hours
Roscoff 1 – 2 hours
Ferries direct to Brittany (Portsmouth-St Malo and Plymouth-Roscoff) get fully booked quite quickly, especially weekend crossings during July and August.
If taking a short crossing and a longer drive, you may want to consider an overnight hotel. Different hotel chains provide different room types such as triple and family rooms, so it is worth doing some research. A good starting point is the Accor Hotels website which features a number of the leading chains across a wide price range including Novotel, Mercure, Ibis and Formula 1.
Most of our villas in Brittany have a Saturday arrival day. So, although there is a good choice of direct flights from a number of airports, flights on a Saturday are more limited.
The details below are correct to the best of our knowledge. However, please check the airline’s website for up to date information.
We also recommend that before you book you make yourself aware of the airline’s cancellation terms in case of further flight disruptions.
All the above-mentioned airports offer car hire from all the major rental companies. It goes without saying that we recommend you pre-book your car, and shop around for the best deal.
Our top tips for car hire:
- Take advantage of the online check-in facility offered by some rental agencies before you travel. This will save time on arrival at the airport.
- If possible, get the person in whose name the car has been booked to go straight to the car-hire desk, rather than wait for your luggage, to get ahead of the queue at the rental desk.
- We read of many problems where rental agencies claim that the vehicle has been damaged, even though the bumps or scratches were pre-existing. Take a moment to photo the vehicle where pre-existing damage has been highlighted on your rental agreement as proof should there be any future dispute.
To make the most of your stay at one of our villas in Brittany we strongly recommend having access to a car. Nonetheless, if members of your party are arriving by different means, travelling to Brittany on the train is an option to consider.
Through tickets are available from London to all major stations in Brittany using Eurostar and high-speed TGV trains. The journey time from London to Rennes is usually just over six hours, with over eight hours the norm for destinations further into Brittany, such as Lorient or Quimper.
All journeys require a change and we recommend itineraries where this happens at Lille Europe, where only a change of platform is required. Other options entail crossing Paris between terminals, which may be off-putting for some.
Tickets can be booked at the English language website of French Railways.
If your travel plans are a little more complicated and involve flights and train travel, there are direct trains from Paris Charles de Gaulle airport to Brittany. Journey time is about three hours to Rennes. Trains are not too frequent, so check your itinerary carefully and be aware of your options if your flight is delayed.
Information updated February 2024.